Students engage with STEM project

Emily Collins
May 11, 2023

Pupils from schools across our area have been putting their engineering and design skills to the test after taking part in a project with Siemens Mobility.

Children from Boothferry, Kingsway, Snaith, Airmyn, Barmby on the Marsh and Barlby Primary Schools attended the event at the business’s new factory in Goole on Tuesday, April 25 to put into practice skills they have been learning in recent months. Siemens Mobility has been collaborating with Primary Engineer since 2021 to inspire the next generation of engineers, with ambassadors from Siemens working with the schools since December to set pupils aged 5 to 11 a challenge of designing and building their own miniature trains. The project culminated in the event at Siemens’ new factory last week, with pupils showcasing their creations and putting them to the test on a short stretch of track.

Finbarr Dowling, Head of UK Localisation, at Siemens Mobility said: “This is the second year we have been involved with this exciting programme and the creativity demonstrated by all the children was truly inspiring. “Being a STEM ambassador is really rewarding and this is an event my colleagues and I really look forward to each year. It’s great to think some of the children involved could be inspired to become our future engineers and could even be working from this factory in years to come.”

One of the schools involved with the project was Snaith Primary School. Vicky Clarkson, Year Two Class teacher at the school said: “I was excited to see 60 children all come together in the hall for this fun and purposeful learning experience. By working together step by step, the children built incredible relationships and learned skills that would have been difficult to achieve in other ways. “The relaxed atmosphere allowed us to fully enjoy the experience, and we even came together to see how far we could get the shoe back trains to move. It was such a positive and enjoyable experience that we have decided to roll it out to the rest of the school." Volunteers from Siemens Mobility engineers and STEM ambassadors have been working with teachers from 13 local primary schools across the area to prepare for the Primary Engineering project. In addition to conducting training sessions with the teachers, the engineers and ambassadors have visited classrooms to provide valuable insights and guidance on constructing and testing train models.

During these interactive sessions, the engineers shared their personal experiences on what it means to be an engineer. They also helped children to assemble the train frame and axis holes for the wheels and connect the battery pack, motor and gear-pulley system for the trains they had assembled. Engineers shared their examples of the rail projects they have worked on, ranging from designing the control system for the central section of the Elizabeth line to maintaining West Midlands Trains. The Primary Engineer programme aims to ignite interest and curiosity in engineering among children from a young age. It developed a project-based learning approach that allows children and pupils to engage in practical maths and science, along with creative problem-solving and literacy. By bridging the gap between education and industry, the programme enables pupils to engage with STEM subjects through practical engineering-based projects. Working with Siemens Mobility, pupils can see how these skills can be brought to life across the rail industry and beyond.  Nathalie Cachet-Gaujard, Primary Engineer’s head of partnerships for the North of England, said: “The Primary Engineer Rail Programme is designed to ignite interest and curiosity about engineering. Building on last year’s collaboration, we are delighted to work again this year with Siemens Mobility in Goole, their support and engagement with the schools is invaluable and crucial to raise awareness of the career opportunities amongst pupils in Goole. “We are privileged to work with such a passionate and professional team and what a joy to hold the Celebration Event in their Assembly Hall at the Rail Village!"

Pupils from schools across our area took part in an event with Siemens Mobility. (04-05-102 SU)

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